Wednesday, May 3, 2006

E-Discovery Resource

Interested in discovery issues related to data stored on servers and hard drives, in Blackberries and PDAs, and anywhere else electronic? Check out Electronic Discovery Law, a blog about e-discovery by the Document Analysis Technology Group at Preston Gates & Ellis LLP.

In addition to regular posts about new developments, the site includes a searchable Electronic Discovery Case Database.

I learned about the site this morning, when I heard a presentation by Julie Ann Halter, a partner in the Document Analysis Technology Group.

It's a complex field. Litigators take note: many courts are holding attorneys to a high standard -- e.g., being knowledgeable enough about clients' IT systems to manage document searches and making sure the clients retain documents once there's a reasonable likelihood of litigation.

In addition to the pending changes to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, you might want to be aware to the possibility of changes to Fed. R. Evid. 502, concerning the waiver of attorney-client privilege and protection of work product. Just last week, the Advisory Committee on the Federal Rules of Evidence conducted a hearing to discuss proposals. See post on Electronic Discovery Law.

I'm not an expert in e-discovery, but I picked up a good tip this morning: If you're under a court order to produce data from hard drives, do not run a program called "Evidence Eliminator." Use of Evidence Eliminator Results in Default Judgment Recommendation and Award of $145,811.75 in Expenses and Costs. (Losing the case and paying $145,800 would be bad enough -- but that extra $11.75 really lets you know you made a mistake.)

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